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Ahead of the latest inflation reports, an economic adviser to President Biden claimed Tuesday that rising prices mostly represented the president’s efforts against the pandemic.
Appearing on CNN’s “New Day,” Cecilia Rouse fielded questions from host Brianna Keilar about economists and Democrat politicians blaming the record inflation levels on Biden’s massive spending packages and whether they were right in warning against them.
A worker selects meat at a butcher shop at Reading Terminal Market after the inflation rate hit a 40-year high in January, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., February 19, 2022. REUTERS/Hannah Beier (REUTERS/Hannah Beier)
“I’m not sure what the right is. What we have here is an economy that is recovering from a pandemic. The downturn was caused by the pandemic. We had to basically power down our economy until we had the therapeutics and vaccinations and shots in the arms,” Rouse answered.
Keilar pressed further, asking, “They warned that the spending levels, which, of course, I understand the White House and you consider very necessary for the situation that the economy and that the pandemic was in, but that it would cause inflation of maybe a higher level than certain people, including at the White House, were expecting. Were they right?”
Rouse doubled down and insisted that inflation was the result of Biden’s “effective strategy” against the coronavirus pandemic.
Long Island, NY Target showing empty formula shelves. Photo taken by Nicole Pelletiere. (Fox News Digital)
“So what we have seen is that all advanced countries are trying to address inflation, and they have, you know, historic levels of inflation,” Rouse said. “That has been the consequence of mounting an effective response to the pandemic. Because while we supported households and businesses, got shots into arms, which allowed people to start to come out of their homes and regain their lives, our supply chains could not support that demand. We are not alone. All advanced countries are addressing this. This is a consequence of having an effective strategy against the pandemic.”
She also called on Congress to do its own part in attempting to alleviate high prices.
“This is why the president understands that the Federal Reserve needs to do its job, and he encourages Congress to confirm all of his nominees so they have a full slate and can address their dual mandate of price stability and full employment,” Rouse said. “We understand that is the economic challenge in front of us. That is what he’s focused on every day.”
FILE PHOTO: Gas prices grow along with inflation as this sign at a gas station shows in San Diego, California, U.S. November, 9, 2021. (REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo)
On Wednesday, the Labor Department announced that prices surged by 8.3% in April. While this was below the 8.5% increase in March, the numbers were higher than predicted by economists.